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Siegelman "Wrongly Convicted": Twins Killed in Birmingham: Alligator, Bear Mixing with Floridians: Geese Relocated in Ga and

By: AP
By: AP
Alligator could be saying,

Alligator could be saying, "Welcome to Florida's Waterways"...see you later, alligator (ouch!..apologies to Bill Haley and the Comets)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (AP) -- A former Republican congressman expressed support for imprisoned former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, a Democrat.
Al.com reports former U.S. Rep Parker Griffith of Huntsville said Saturday he hopes to influence the president's director of pardons to free Siegelman. Griffith says Siegelman was "unjustly convicted and sentenced."
Siegelman is in federal prison after being convicted on corruption charges.
Griffith was elected to Congress in 2009 as a Democrat and changed parties during his term. He says many Republicans and Democrats feel Siegelman's conviction was politically motivated.
Griffith spoke at the Madison County Teenage Democrats headquarters. He spoke before a speech by state Rep. Patricia Todd, a Birmingham Democrat and the state's only openly gay lawmaker. She spoke about the Supreme Court decision to declare the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- Police in Birmingham say 17-year-old twin brothers were the victims of a double homicide.
Al.com reports that Jonathan and Jerry Berry were fatally shot Friday night at a home in the Wylam community. Their mother was also shot, but police say she's expected to recover.
Homicide investigators say they don't believe the shootings were random. No arrests have been made and no charges have been filed. Police say investigators need the cooperation of the victims' family and the public. Anyone with information is asked to call police.
There have been 38 homicides in Birmingham this year, compared to 31 in the first six months of last year. The city ended 2012 with 72 killings.

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) -- Tailgaters at Auburn football games will have more room to set up their spreads. The university's athletic department says it's adding parking and tailgating areas for football Saturdays. A new parking and tailgating plan adds more than 2,000 free and 800 paid parking spaces. They are first-come, first-served.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- A federal judge is blocking part of Alabama's new abortion clinic law from taking effect for now. U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson says he needs time to review evidence. He issued an order yesterday temporarily prohibiting the law from taking effect.

LOXAHATCHEE, Fla. (AP) -- Palm Beach County authorities say a woman was rescued after an alligator bit her inflatable boat in the Florida Everglades.
Fire Rescue officials say the woman was floating on an inflatable boat in the Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge on Saturday when the gator attacked the raft, causing it to sink. Rescue officials had to send an airboat to reach the woman.
She was not injured, but authorities say she was "shaken up" by the event. She hasn't been identified.
The wildlife refuge west of Boynton Beach is the last northernmost portion of the Everglades.
According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Loxahatchee Refuge consists of more than 200 square miles of Everglades habitat. It's home to the American alligator and the endangered Everglade snail kite.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Wildlife officials are waiting for nightfall to decide whether to remove a bear that is perched in a tree in New Smyrna Beach.
The Florida black bear was spotted Saturday morning. Visitors to the area are taking pictures and video -- from a distance.
The Daytona Beach News Journal reports (http://bit.ly/14Efzhl ) the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is keeping an eye on the bear and will wait for it to get dark before any decision is made to remove the animal.
Authorities say the bear likely traveled a couple of miles and crossed Interstate 95 in the early morning hours
FWC reports the Florida black bear population is thriving. The current population is estimated at more than 3,000, compared with as few as 300 in the 1970s.

SANFORD, Fla. (AP) -- Jurors heard conflicting accounts of the late-night scuffle that ended in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The first week of testimony concluded Friday in the second-degree murder trial of George Zimmerman. Two neighbors and a police officer gave testimony that appeared to bolster claims by the defense that the neighborhood watch volunteer was pinned down by the teenager.

PANAMA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Police say a woman who was kidnapped in Florida managed to escape her abductors in Mississippi. A Bay County Sheriff's Office statement says the 34-year-old woman got away Thursday evening and went to Hattiesburg Police Department for help. She took officers to the home of her captors where a man and woman were taken into custody.

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. (AP) -- A flock of geese living on Robins Air Force Base have been given a one-way trip to a new home on the Georgia coast.
Base officials say they worked with biologists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently to round up Canada geese at the middle Georgia base and transport them to a state-run wildlife management area near Darien, a coastal city between Savannah and Brunswick.
Bob Sargent, the Air Force base's natural resources manager, at times used bread crumbs to help coax the large birds. He says the reason for relocating the geese is simple -- they can pose a threat to planes taking off and landing at Robins.
How serious is the threat? The base actually has a Bird/Wildlife Aircraft Strike Hazard program -- also known as BASH.

ATLANTA (AP) -- A Fulton County judge has refused to dismiss the case against dozens of Atlanta educators accused of conspiring to cheat on standardized tests. The judge expressed concerns about the prosecution's case last week about the case against the former superintendent and 34 others.

DECATUR, Ga. (AP) -- The Georgia Bureau of Investigation's southwestern regional crime lab has received international accreditation for forensic DNA analysis. The lab in Moultrie was certified this week by the American Society of Crime Lab Directors/Laboratory Accreditation Board. It means the lab meets internationally recognized quality standards.

FORT BENNING, Ga. (AP) -- Independence Day is coming early for soldiers and families stationed at Fort Benning. The Army post outside Columbus scheduled its fireworks display at nightfall Saturday. The Army's National Infantry Museum, also located in Columbus, will hold its own celebration Thursday.


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